Workers’ Compensation for Carpal Tunnel and Cubital Tunnel Syndrome
What Is Carpal Tunnel Syndrome?
CTS is a type of nerve damage caused by compression and irritation of the median nerve in the wrist within the carpal tunnel, a bony canal in the palm side of the wrist. The irritation is specifically due to pressure from the transverse carpal ligament. The symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome include numbness and tingling especially on the thumb side of the hand, wrist pain, a “pins and needles” feeling at night, grip weakness and lack of coordination.
Workers at increased risk for developing work-related carpal tunnel syndrome is usually required to use strong hand or wrist actions at work, such as frequent users of computers or keyboards, clerks at a checkout line, assembly line workers, or anyone else whose duties involve repetitive motion of the fingers or wrists. People who use vibrating tools, such as engravers or construction or factory workers, are also susceptible.
The following activities are all contributors to carpal tunnel syndrome and cubital tunnel syndrome, which are work-related injuries that can qualify for workers’ compensation:
- Scanning items at a cash register
- Assembly line work
- Using vibrating tools, such as engraving tools
- Falling against your wrists or arms in a work-related accident
- Any repetitive movement at work
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome is a form of a repetitive stress injury and can be painful and debilitating. If CTS if left untreated, it can cause permanent damage to your hands, as well as your ability to work and do everyday tasks. CTS can be caused by repetitive motions such as doing the same hand task over and over again.
According to the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety (“CCOSH”), CTS has been associated with certain tasks including:
- Repetitive hand motions
- Awkward hand positions
- Strong gripping
- Mechanical stress on the palm
If your job involves these types of tasks and you are experiencing symptoms of CTS, you should see a physician and act quickly to determine your legal rights by contacting a work injury lawyer.
Not Limited to Office Workers
A misconception about CTS is that it is only thought of as a condition impacting office workers and computer users. However, in addition to office work, CTS can also affect workers in industries such as:
- Assembly line work (using small tools).
- Manufacturing (pressing, pulling machinery).
- Sewing (using needles, pulling cloth).
- Janitorial/cleaning (scrubbing, mopping).
- Meat packing/meat processing (cutting, deboning).
Other examples from CCOSH include:
- Farm workers (milking cows, hand-picking produce).
- Mechanics (using ratchets and screwdrivers).
- Gardener (using hand-tools).
- Painter (using sprayers, holding brushes/scrapers).
- Musician (using bow, fingering of piano and other instruments).
- Cashiers/retail (using laser scanner at checkout).
- Locksmith (turning keys).
What Is Cubital Tunnel Syndrome?
Cubital tunnel syndrome is caused by an injury to or repetitive movement of the nerve that runs behind the elbow. It can be injured by leaning on the elbow, resting the elbow on an elbow rest during a long distance drive, or running machinery. Pressure on that nerve (the ulnar nerve) can cause numbness and tingling in the ring and small fingers of the hand, degenerating into the weakness of the hand and pain at the elbow.
Krasno, Krasno & Onwudinjo Can Help
An experienced workers’ compensation lawyer from Krasno, Krasno & Onwudinjo can help determine if you are eligible to receive benefits because of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome or Cubital Tunnel Syndrome. Our dedicated attorneys and legal team will advocate for you and seek the benefits to which you are entitled. If you have questions regarding a case, contact us today at (866) 948-9088.